When I first got my Fitbit, I wanted to see how many steps I averaged per day just doing my normal thing. The recommended amount of steps per day is 10,000; shouldn’t be too hard with a toddler, right? Wrong! I was surprised to see I was averaging only 6,000 steps per day, but it made sense; I was sitting with Allison a lot, watching her play, reading her books… those aren’t bad things at all, but I just thought I was more active than I really was. I started my fitness journey knowing I had to step up my game if I wanted to lose weight, so I started fitting in more steps in my day without a ton of extra effort. Here are 4 things you can do to get extra steps every day:
Walk around while brushing your teeth/talking on the phone
Are you like me and just stare at yourself in the mirror while brushing your teeth? I now walk around the living room or march in the bedroom while watching TV, and just a few minutes of that gives me an extra one or two hundred steps.
March in place when at a standstill
I always eat breakfast before Allison gets up, so while she’s eating breakfast I empty the dishwasher and then march in place. Yes, marching still counts as steps! Sometimes she takes awhile to eat, so I can easily get 1,500-2,000 steps in during this time. If I’m standing at the stove and can’t walk away, I’ll march in place then, too. You wouldn’t believe how much empty time you can fill with steps! Depending on how silly you want to look, you can march in place anywhere in public, too; I’m not responsible for any strange looks you may get, though.
To me, dancing still counts as steps, so go for it! I’ll turn up the radio and try to get Allison to dance with me. It gets you moving, and you’re technically still getting steps in; plus, it’s fun! I’m sure many have glanced in my kitchen window every morning and wondered what the heck that crazy girl is doing.
Stop being efficient
If you’re cleaning up the living room or something, make extra trips! Pick up one toy at a time, walk it over to your child’s toybox, then walk back and repeat as many times as needed. Depending on how cluttered the living room is, I can get between 500-1,000 steps every day doing this right before bed.
Along with this, if you’re at the grocery store, take the long way around to get what you want. Start at the opposite entrance and make your way over to the food, walking down every aisle along the way. As a side note, if you’re pushing a cart, you may not get your steps counted because you’re holding the cart. John puts his Fitbit in his pocket, and I just tap my hand on the cart in rhythm with my feet; that seems to work pretty well.
Would you add anything to this list? Help me get the most out of my steps!
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Jaime is a Nutrition Coach and professional writer. She enjoys cooking easy meals, running, and learning more about food.
Jaime specializes in helping women with ADHD learn to meal plan and cook healthier meals without getting overwhelmed.